More People, More Active, More Often: The launch of the Sport and Recreation Spatial website and portal
A significant milestone was recently achieved with the December 2012 launch of the Sport and Recreation Spatial project website and portal. This presents comprehensive past and current state and national sport and recreation participation data which can be accessed by peak sporting bodies, local and community sports clubs and organisations – as well as the general public.
The Sport and Recreation Spatial project commenced in 2012 and was developed as a system for presenting spatial data for the sport and recreation industry. The project is being led by Dr Rochelle Eime, joint VicHealth Research Practice Fellow (Physical Activity) at the University of Ballarat and Victoria University, and has been supported by Senior Statistician Dr Jack Harvey. The Centre for eCommerce and Communications (CeCC) at the University of Ballarat has established the spatial ICT system and website, which has been specifically tailored for this project by senior programmer in CeCC, Paul Feely.
The Sport and Recreation Spatial website has been described by senior sporting industry figures as ‘revolutionary’ in its presentation of sport and recreational participation data for Australia. Users can explore an interactive and intuitive spatial representation of participation, including map layers generated from the National Exercise Recreation and Sport Survey (ERASS) and the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
In addition to participation rates, membership data for eight of the top Victorian State Sporting Associations is being integrated into the website. Sporting Associations will be able to login and explore their player, coach and official data, spatially.
This will provide organisations with an understanding of participation trends and how this relates to population demographics, as well as differences across geographical locations. Participating State Sporting Associations include Australian Football League Victoria, Basketball Victoria, Bowls Victoria, Cricket Victoria, Football Federation Victoria, Hockey Victoria, Netball Victoria and Tennis Victoria.
The sport and recreation spatial website will continue to evolve throughout 2013. Additional features, and data, will be added including Victorian sporting and recreation ‘facilities’ data (including every stadium, tennis court, golf course) together with updated census data (including region populations and Socio Economic Indexes for Areas, SEIFA). This will assist in planning the geographical distribution of sport and recreation facilities in relation to population demographics and participation. In addition, data from the National Health Survey by the Australian Bureau of Statistics will be mapped to explore the ecological associations between participation in sport and recreation and various health outcomes.
The Sport and Recreation Spatial website and project represents significant advances in consolidating, capturing and depicting region-specific sport and recreation data. It provides the opportunity for industry to gather new insights into sports participation across local regions, and provides the sport and recreation sector with increased capacity for research, strategic planning, and development of participation programs and facilities.
Dr Eime looks forward to promoting and sharing the data available through the website with regional, state and national-sporting organisations. She is also excited about how this project can provide evidence to inform planning at the grassroots level of sport, with the ultimate aim of encouraging more people to be more active, more often, leading to improved health and fitness for Australians.
For more information about this project, please contact project Leader, Dr Rochelle Eime, Email: email@example.com; Telephone: (03) 5327 9687
For further information about the technical features of the website, or about CeCC, please contact CeCC Director Dr Helen Thomson: firstname.lastname@example.org; Telephone: (03) 5327 9418